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Fourth Period Hell Room
I really wasn’t looking forward to going back to school. My summer vacation was great and I didn’t want to return to the dirty looks from the girls and the bullying from the jocks. But I had no other choice since I wanted to get into an Ivy League school. I am a junior in Trinity T. High School, home of the Trinity Titans (Woohoo!). I have a thing for the hottest girl in the school but she wasn’t into guys like me. Guys like Jim Tarver—captain and quarterback for the Titans—were the type of guys that she was into. Guys like that were bigger than me, more athletic, and had his name in every girl’s sentence. I was the guy that only gets asked about computer problems. Well, that’s life as a kid in the shadows right?
So here I am, walking the same halls with awkward stares walking to my home room. Mrs. Gibbons is the only teacher that gives me hope to keep coming back to school, and to stand up for myself. But today was just a tad different. I walked inside the room and she wasn’t at her desk, or in the class. She would usually greet us the second we walk past the door. I was thinking: ‘Maybe she was running late from her other class’ or ‘She forgot to come to work today’. I walked over and sat next to my friend Jake. He and I have been friends since we were in diapers. If that’s not a brother bond is, than I don’t know what is. Our class was in a computer room, so he had his eyes glued on the screen looking at a new video game that were going to come out.
“Randy, you got to check this out,” he says showing me the computer screen. “This is the new fighting game that they have coming out. They say that they might have some celebrity guests to do the voice over.”
“So far, they got Mark Walberg, Jamie Foxx, and The Reaper from the MetalSkullz is going to be on there too.” He cried
“Sounds cool, but…have you seen Mrs. Gibbons?”
“Nope, I haven’t seen her all morning.” Jake replied.
“Well, I hope she’s okay. You know she never misses a day in school.”
“Yeah, maybe she caught a cold. She’ll be here, bro, don’t sweat it” he said turning his attention to the computer screen.
I turn on my computer and place my books next to the monitor. I usually check my e-mails to see if there was anything interesting in it, but it always comes to a silent disappointment. I look over to the door while the computer was loading, and there was still no Mrs. Gibbons. I look back at the computer, and as usual no mail or instant messages. Surprise, surprise. After I closed the internet out, a strange man walks through the door with a black suitcase. He had a casual shirt with a blazer with dark blue denim jeans. He places his suitcase on the desk and looks at his silver Rolex watch and gets the classes attention.
“Alright class, listen up! My name is Mr. Reed, and I will be taking over for Mrs. Gibbons for the next following weeks.” He says while doing the teacher ritual—writing his name on the board--.
I raised my hand, and the second he turns around and sees my hand he gives me an awkward stare as if I was crazy to have my had raised.
“Yes, Mr…..” he called.
“Ericson. I just wanted to know what happened to Mrs. Gibbons?”
“Ah, I know who you are. You are Mrs. Gibbon’s best student in her class. Well she’s feeling ill and I have talk to her over the phone that her class will be just fine.” He explains while facing the board. “Now today before you guys leave, I will just give you a bit of detail about myself—“ He turns and sees my hand in the air again. “Yes Mr. Ericson what is it?”
“Do you know when she will be coming back?” I asked nervously.
He places the dry erase marker on the desk and walked over to me with a slight chuckle.
“You see class. This is why Mr. Ericson has the second highest GPA in the school. Back when I was your age I was told to be smart you either have good memory when you hit the books. Or, you are know too much info that you need to know.” He looks at me with an angry stare.
I looked into Mr. Reeds eyes and saw disturbing things that could scare any human being on the face of the earth. I looked over at Jake for help, but he had the same look as I did.
“Any more questions before I finish, Mr. Ericson?” he asked with content in his voice.
“No, sir.” I said with fear in my voice.
He walks back over to the board and tells the class more about himself. He bragged about the degrees he had gotten from Florida State, and that he’s married to a beautiful heart surgeon. Hopefully, she is more polite about certain people’s whereabouts. The bell rings and I grab my books and make my way to the flow of students walking toward the door.
“Alright everyone, be on time tomorrow and Mr. Ericson,” he calls pointing his finger at me in a shape of a gun. “I have my eye on you.”
I was scared that I made a new enemy in the school. Usually I wouldn’t care less if it was a student, but a teacher is a completely different story. Jake waited up for me by the door.
“Dude what happened in there?” he asked
“I don’t know, I asked him a few simple questions and he kind of took it as a threat from what it looks like.”
“Well whatever you do don’t get on his bad side again….he creeps me out.” He said.
After school, I usually walk to home with Jake. We stayed a block away from each other, and just in case we walked into any trouble we would back each other up. I waited outside on the picnic table across the street from the teacher’s parking lot. I’m always the first one out of the school before Jake. He moves a lot slower when it comes to us leaving the school. But, when it comes down to switching classes he moves as quickly as Olympic track stars. While I wait on him, I usually open a book and cat up on my reading. I was reading a book called Lone Wolf; it was about a kid who lost his mother around the holiday season, and he didn’t know how to cope without her one Christmas. It must be rough for him to lose his mother around that particular season. Five minutes later Jake makes his way across the street, and we began our journey back home.
“Dude, you won’t believe who I saw in the hallway before I left.” He said
“Who was it?”
“Heather Rivers, she was walking to cheerleader practice. And we talked for a bit.” He laughed.
“What did she say? Did she ask you out?”
“Nope she just asked me about homework in Mr. Cleveland’s class.”
During the conversation, I felt like we were being followed. Like there was somebody watching us walk home. I looked over my shoulder and there was a black Corvette creeping behind us. Whoever the driver was must be looking for a parking spot, so I ignored it and continued walking home. A few blocks later we were reaching Jake’s house. The Black Corvette was still behind us in the same speed that I saw it moving in when we were first walking home.
“Jake, you noticed that car has been following us?” I asked.
“What car?” he says turning around.
I look back at the road and the Corvette was gone. It had to have turned at the intersection down the street.
“There was a black car that was following us. It was just here.”
“Maybe it was just some blonde getting lost again you know how they drive sometimes.” He says.
I was hoping that he was right; I took a sigh of relief that I didn’t have to worry about the car or anything else following me. I told Jake I would see him tomorrow and began making the rest of my way home.
I walked through the door of my home and my dog, Rocky, always greets me by tackling me to the floor and licking my face. I have had rock since I was in the 6th grade, we picked him out in a vet and he was the only golden retriever there that caught my eye. My dad told me to take care of him or else he was going to be back in the pound. Luckily, he was my only best friend that I had besides Jake. I always took care of him as if he was my baby brother. My older sister, Tara, walked down the stairs and greets me with an insult as usual. My sister and I always had a bond where we never hurt each other feelings. We would just talk trash back and forth and laugh about it. I went to the kitchen and saw my mother was already making dinner.
“Hey, honey,” she says walking over hugging me. “How was school?”
“The same, just some stuff are out of place.” I replied grabbing Rocky’s food tray.
“Any new teacher’s?” she asked?
“Yeah just this guy is subbing for Mrs. Gibbons.” I said nervously.
“Is she okay?” she said while she cut carrots on the cutting board.
“I don’t know,” I said while filling up Rocky’s water dish. “The sub didn’t really like me asking him questions about her today.”
She finished chopping the carrots and placed them into a boiling pot of stew that she was making. She looks over at me and saw that I had this concerned look on my face.
“That’s strange; you didn’t ask the new teacher too many questions, right? That always kind of puts them in the weird position.” She asked.
“I only asked him two questions that was it. He got all out of shape, so I left it alone. I don’t really think he likes me though.”
“Well just give it a few days honey, you’ll get use to him.” She said walking over kissing me on the forehead.
I walked upstairs and threw my book bag on my bed. Rocky follows me into the room jumping into my bed and lies down. I jumped on my computer and check my Facebook page. The usual always happens here; I chat with Jake and put up a corny status hoping that a hot girl from school adds me. I hear the front door close, and that only means one thing...dad’s home. My dad and I were very different but we always got along well. If there was a problem I was going through he wasn’t hesitant to help. I over hear my mother talking to him about my encounter with Mr. Reed.
“I’ll talk to him, dear.” He says.
He walks up the stairs and stops at my doorstep and knocks.
“Sup kiddo. How was school?” he asked.
“A little rough, but it was alright.” I replied.
He looks around my room and notices the new Reaper poster I had on the wall.
“Is that a new one?” he asked with a smile.
“Yeah, they had a new record out last week. Jake and I were the first to get them we got free posters.”
“There’s a sweet deal.” He chuckles. “So what happened with your new home room teacher?”
“It was just a little miscommunication is all, dad. Hopefully tomorrow he will be different.” I replied.
“Alright, well your mother’s done with dinner come on down and eat okay.” He said.
I nod my head and turn to the computer and log off.
The next day in school was extended division. Jake and I were fooling around in the chat line making fun of Mr. Reed’s red blazer he was wearing. Jake kept texting me ‘Roll out the red carpet’ and it kept me in stitches. Mr. Reed calls for our attention, and begins speaking.
“Class, as you all know that I was appointed that I was going to be covering for Mrs. Gibbons since she was ill. Well I spoke to your principal earlier today and he has filled me in on some disturbing news on Mrs. Gibbons.”
I raised my hand nervously and he looks at me with the same evil and angry stare.
“Mr. Ericson, you seize to let me finish my statements in the limited time I have with you, do you?” he said.
“Don’t mind him Mr. Reed he just has a tendency to kissing the teacher’s ass” said Jim Tarver.
“Son, we don’t use foul language in this class.” He says to Tarver. He turns his attention back to the class completely ignoring my question. “Now you principle has informed me that Mrs. Gibbons has resigned from teaching here.”
I was in shock I to hear that she would quit working here. She was a great teacher here, I would understand she can handle ignorant students and cocky jocks, but quitting isn’t like her at all. I had to get to the bottom of this and see why she quit.
“Mr. Ericson,” he calls looking at me with an evil smirk. “Was that what you were going to ask me?”
Ignored him and continued on talking to Jake. I sent him a message saying ‘I am going to visit Mrs. Gibbons tonight’.
The bell rings, and I rushed grabbing my books and rushed out of the door before I have another creepy encounter with Reed.
After school I told Jake met up with me at my locker.
“You need me to come with you to her house?” he asked.
“It’s alright I was just going over there and I’m going to ask her why she’s quitting.”
“Alright just call if anything happens.” He instructed.
I close my locker and we walk out of the school building and the black Corvette that was following me was parked near the parking exit. I grab Jake by the should and point at the car.
“Look it’s the car that was following us yesterday.” I tell him.
He looks at the car. “You sure that’s the car?”
“Yeah, I remember the tinted windows and the plate’s first three letters.” I said.
“Alright maybe it won’t follow us today, bro.” he said while we began walking through the lot.
As soon as we crossed the street, Jake and I departed and I began walking to Mrs. Gibbons.
I was across the street from Mrs. Gibbons’ house, but I still felt like I was being followed. I take a quick glance over my shoulder to see if the Corvette was following me. It wasn’t there. I walked across the street and walked up the doorsteps to her house and knocked on the door. When I knocked the door slowly opened, and I thought that Mr. Gibbons left the door open and the door didn’t catch. It’s a simple mistake the people do. I slowly opened the door and placed my book bag by the door way.
“Mrs. Gibbons!” I called closing the door.
There was no answer. The house was very silent, but this was a silence that was scaring me. I walked around the house in the awkward silence and a bad feeling in my gut. I walked in the kitchen and there was a mess all over the place. Dishes were on the ground broken into pieces and furniture was out of place. There had to have been a fight in here, but I can’t imagine Mr. and Mrs. Gibbons arguing at all. Every year of open house Ms. Gibbons brought Mr. Gibbons and the smile they would have on their face were as permanent as spray paint on a bare wall. I continued investigating the house calling Mrs. Gibbons hoping to get a response or at least a sound telling me that she was home. I walked out of the destroyed kitchen and looked over at the stair case leading to the second floor. There was blood drops on the stair case, and I thought that maybe somebody got hurt with the dishes and had went up stairs to the bathroom to clean themselves up. I slowly walked upstairs and followed the blood drops to the next floor. Every step that I was taking my heart was racing faster than a NASCAR engine, and my stomach pain was burning and spinning. I never had been exposed to things like this. I was looking at things that didn’t match Mrs. Gibbons at all and didn’t know what to think.
I reach the next floor of the house and seen more blood on the floor than it was on the stairs and there were fingerprints on the walls leading to a closet door. I was scared. I didn’t know either to look at what was inside the door or to call the police. But if I did, they were going to arrest me for trespassing, and I don’t want to go to jail for checking on my teacher. I walked slowly to the closet door and my heart was almost about to jump out of my heart. Just as I was about to reach for the doorknob; my cell phone ring scaring the life out of me. It was Jake calling; he was probably calling me to tell me he made it home, so I answered.
“Hey, man, I just got inside. Hey you remember that Corvette you showed me earlier?” he asked.
“Yeah what about it?” I said turning away from the closet door.
“Well whoever it was driving it was following me home. I took like all types of crazy routes hoping to dodge it, but it was still on my tail.”
“Did you call the cops at least?” I asked.
“They got a car going around my block and yours. Hopefully it scared him off.” He said “did you talk to Mrs. Gibbons yet”
I wanted to tell him what was going on, but if I did he would have freaked out and told his mom. Then, his mom would have told my mom and I would be in trouble.
“No, I haven’t seen her yet.” I said hesitantly.
“Alright well let me know if anything happens.”
“Alright,” I said hanging up the phone.
I turn my attention back to the closet door. I walked back toward it and reached for the doorknob. I slowly turned the knob, and pulled the door open. Out of nowhere the door swings open and a body falls to the floor. It was Mr. Gibbons in a pool of his own blood. He had a cut just where his throat was and blood was all over his clothes and body. I wanted to puke. The smell was too rancid and I was scared beyond my mind. I didn’t know to do I couldn’t do anything. He was gone. It was hard for me to conclude that Mrs. Gibbons was the person that had murdered her husband. She might have killed him and left the school because the police would have been all over her. This all didn’t make sense. Why would she kill her own husband? I looked further down the hall and saw more blood on a bedroom doorway. I walked inside the bedroom and I couldn’t believe it, Mrs. Gibbons was in the bed in a bloody mess of her own. She was dead too. The room was a complete mess, there was a pile of dirty bloody clothes on the floor and I looked in the closet and half the closet was empty. I looked over at Mrs. Gibbons and I ran out of the house. I grabbed my bag from the door way, and took off slamming the door behind me. I ran across the street without paying attention, and I landed on the hood of a car. The car stopped as I fell to the ground and rolled over to my stomach. I wasn’t hurt too badly, I my legs were just a little sore. I hear the door of the driver’s car shut, and footsteps coming my way.
“Hey man, what the hell were you thinking running into the streets like that?” he asked turning me over to my back. “Ericson!” he cried.
I opened my eyes and see that it was an old friend, John Wellers. He and I were good friends in grade school until he started hanging around the wrong people. As soon as we left grade school, we were two completely different people. He was wearing a pair of steel-toed boots, dark blue jeans with a chain hanging from the side, a MetaSkullz t-shirt and a black leather vest.
“Dude, what the hell are you doing over here? And why are you jumping in traffic like a stunt dummy?” he asked.
“I was just in the neighborhood—“I said.
“Yeah, yeah.” He said extending his hand to help me up.
I grabbed his hand and he helped me get back to my feet. He walked me over to his car and told me to get in. He starts the engine and the radio was blasting Avenged Sevenfold. He turns the volume down and parks on a local block. He puts the car in park and shuts the engine off. I was still shaken up from what I witnessed in Mrs. Gibbons house. John looked at me and knew that there was something wrong.
“What’s wrong, did I hit you a little too hard?” he asked.
“No….no you didn’t. It’s just….” I couldn’t speak; it was like my tongue was rotating one way, while my stomach was going the other war.
I asked him to unlock the door , and I opened the door and puked all over the curb. John taps me on the shoulder while I was puking with a towel in his hand.
“Here I only use it to dry my car, bro.” he said.
I took the towel and began cleaning my face. John’s concerns were doubled after he seen me puke.
“Alright, Randy, we known each other since the third grade. Just tell me what happened cause it had to have been something before I almost made you road kill.” He said
I finished wiping my mouth and took a deep breath. I had to tell someone what I saw in the house, but what if he didn’t believe me. I had to take the risk and tell him. If he didn’t believe me I was back to square one and have to keep this to myself.
“I was just visiting Mrs. Gibbons, and I saw something that kind of freaked me out.” I started.
“What was it?” he asked.
“I……I saw broken dishes…..and blood and it was awful, man.”
“What happened?” he asked.
“I think Mrs. Gibbons killed her husband…….and then killed herself.” I said.
There was an awkward silence in the car, and John had this look on his face and I couldn’t decide whether if he believed what was going on or not.
“So, you’re telling me that Mrs. Gibbons, the nicest teacher in our school, killed her husband and herself?” he asked.
“Yeah, I’ve seen the bodies myself. I know it sounds crazy but it’s true.” I cried.
“I have to see this myself, bro, this is just too hard to believe. Where is the house?” he asked turning on the car’s engine.
“Just around the corner from here, the third house on the left.” I replied.
We pull around the corner, and park a house away from the house. We both exit the car and my stomach begins to turn again.
“Is this the place?” he asked pointing at the house.
“Yeah….it is.” I replied.
We walk up the doorsteps and I turn the doorknob and the door was locked this time.
“I slam it shut after I saw the bodies.” I explained.
John pulls out a Boy Scout knife and picks the lock open. He walks in without any hesitation and calls for Mrs. Gibbons. I pointed in the kitchen and showed him the broken dishes and moved furniture.
“Whatever you do in her Randy, don’t touch anything. As soon as the cops get your prints they will be all over you like ink on paper.” John said.
He observed the way the kitchen was “redecorated” and could tell that there had been a fight here. I showed him the stair case where all the blood was starting to track. We walked up the stair and Mr. Gibbons body was still on the floor. John pulls out a pair of leather gloves and look at the wound on his neck.
“Yeah, you’re right. The way his throat was sliced open he was killed alright. Where was Mrs. Gibbon’s body?” he asked.
I pointed to the bedroom where I last saw her body. We walk inside and the body was still in the bed. He looks at the half empty closet and the mess that was left in the room.
“Well either one of two things happened here. Either she was packing her clothes to get out of town after she whacked her old man, or he was going to kick her out.” He explained.
He walked over to her body and there was a gunshot wound near the temple of her head.
“Now this is weird.” He said looking around the room.
“What?” I asked.
“If she shot herself in the head, her gun would be near her body still.” He explained.
“Where’s the gun?” I asked.
“Not in this room apparently, and plus she would have had a knife with her too. An army knife would have put a big slice through her old man’s neck.” He replied.
“So what are you saying?” I asked
“Mr. and Mrs. Gibbons weren’t fighting. They were both killed by someone else’s hands.”
John and I left the house shutting the door behind us. I pulled out my phone and called Jake.
“Hello?” he answered.
“Hey, man, where are you?” I asked.
“I’m at home still what’s going on you sound scared.” He asked.
“Look I will tell you when I get there. I will be there in a few.” I said hanging up the phone.
John was lighting a cigarette and sat down on the porch steps. I was surprised that he knew all of that stuff in there. I was afraid to ask where did he know all of this and I was scared to know the answer. But after what I witnessed I had nothing to lose.
“Hey, John, can I get a lift to Jake’s place? I gotta let him know what happened to the Gibbons.
“Yeah, he lives a few houses from you still right?” he asked.
“Yeah,”’ I replied.
He nods his head in agreement while taking another hit from his cigarette. We walked back to the car and made our way to Jake’s house. On the way there, I was still wondering how John knew all of the details about how the Gibbons were killed. He takes one last hit of his cigarette and tosses it out the window.
“Hey, John,” I said nervously.
“Yeah?” he replied.
“How did you know all that stuff that happened in there?” I asked hesitantly.
We stop at a red light and gave me the same blank stare that he gave me earlier.
“You know, lots change since we were in grade school. You were on the honor roll back to back, and I was getting perfect attendance in the police precinct. I seen a lot of disturbing stuff in my father’s club, Randy.” He explained.
The traffic light turns green, and John turns toward Jake’s block. I didn’t think joining his father’s club would make him turn into the type of person that he was now. Back in grade school John, Jake and I decided that we were going to be business partners for a big time company with in a big building, something bigger than Donald trump. We were going to be the biggest guys in the city, but I guess that was child talk compared to what was going on now. We park in front of Jake’s house, and John puts the car in park and pauses for a moment.
“Randy I want you to promise me something.” He says looking out the driver’s window.
“What’s that?” I asked.
“…..Back when I started out in my father’s club….there was an initiation that we had to go through. One night my dad walked over and told me and two other guys to meet them around the back of the bar. He grabbed a bottle of whisky and three shot glasses. I thought it was going to be a sacred initiation toast or something, but…it was different.” He began.
“What happened?” I asked.
“Well, we went around the back and there were three guys hog tied and blindfolded. Two other guys that were in the club were setting them up as if they were going to be executed. My father told us that for us to be in the club, we had to drink like men and work like men. We can’t be afraid of fatal outcomes in some of the work that we were going to be doing. After he says that, he pours a shot of whisky in the first glass and hands it over to me. And he pulls out his desert from his vest pocket, and places it in my other hand. He looks me in the eye and says ‘Take a shot of whisky and I want you to put a bullet in this prick head, son’. I didn’t want to do it, I didn’t know what he did to my father or why he had the men hog tied.”
“What did you do?” I asked.
“I had to make my father proud. I took a shot of the whisky, walked over to one of the guys that were tied up and shot him in between the eyes.” He replied.
I looked at him in disbelief; I would have never thought that he would ever kill a man. I never thought he would kill anyone at that.
“I want you to do me a favor, Randy. I want you to promise me that no one knows about this. I got good history with you, and you’re a good person. That’s why I told you.” He said.
“You got my word.” I replied.
We shake hand and leave the car; I finally know why John knew what he knew at the Gibbons house. He killed people, but the only good thing about it is that he didn’t like doing it. He was a killer with a soul and a heart. Hopefully he trusts me enough not to kill me or Jake. I knocked on Jake’s door and my phone rings; my mom was calling probably knowing where I was.
“Yes, mom?” I answered.
“Hey honey, where are you?” she asked.
“I’m down the street at Jake’s. I meant to call but we were focused on our homework.” I replied. I hated lying to my parents, but I could tell them what I saw in that house.
“Okay well, dinner’s going to be ready at seven so try not to be home too late.” She said.
“Yes ma’am, bye.” The second I closed my phone, Jake answered the door.
He looks at me and looks at John.
“John?” he said surprised. “Why are you dressed like the Undertaker?”
“It’s been a rough ride, bro.”John replied
“Well it’s good to see you. How did you bump into Randy?”Jake asked.
“That’s why we’re here.” I said walking inside the house.
John follows me inside the house and looks around noticing the furniture and the way the house looked.
“Nice place.” John said.
“Thanks, my mom is like madly in love with Martha Stewart.” Jake replied.
We walked up to the second floor where the Jake’s room was and took a seat. John and I had look like we bought a dog but it ran away and got ran over. Jake took a seat by his computer and looked at me.
“Alright, what happened?” he asked.
“I went to go see Mrs. Gibbons,” I began.
“And….what happened?” he asked.
“Uhm….Well.” I couldn’t speak, my tongue was getting dry and my palms were getting sweaty.
“We found her and her old man in the house dead.” John finished.
Jake gasped and reached for his asthma pump. “What happened? Who done this?” he cried.
“That’s the thing we don’t know? I don’t even think that the town knows that they are dead.” John replied.
There was an awkward silence in the room, and my stomach began to turn again. The second I blinked I kept seeing the Gibbons dead corpses.
“Now, we have to think. Who or whom would come into the Gibbons house and execute them both?” asked John.
“Maybe her husband borrowed money from a loan shark.” Jake suggested.
“No, they would have gotten rid of the bodies. The cant risk getting arrested, bad for business.” John explained.
“What if it was gang breaking in, thought they weren’t home say them and killed them both.” said Jake.
“No they would have freaked out and left a murder weapon there.” I said.
I couldn’t come up with what happened to them but whoever did it isn’t a human being. They are a monster that needs to be tamed inside a cage, and I wasn’t going to rest easy until I was going to find out who the person was. Jake then turns over to me with another accusation.
“Hey wait, remember what Mr. Reed said about Mrs. Gibbons today?” he asked.
“Yeah, he said she was sick,” I look over at John. “How long do you thing those bodies were executed?” I asked him.
“The way the blood was barely drying and how pale the bodies looked. They looked like they were dead this morning.” John answered.
It made no sense to me, but the clues add up. Mr. Reed must have killed the Gibbons, but the question is why the hell would he do it? He just moved into the neighborhood and barely knows anyone in the area.
“This doesn’t make any sense that he would kill them. The guy just moved from New York, why the hell would he kill Gibbons for.” John said.
“Wait a minute, New York? He told our home room class that he was from Florida. That’s where he got his degree.”
“He told my computer class that he was from New York and married a journalist.” Said John
“Now things are really adding up now. He told us that his wife was a heart surgeon.” I explained.
“Okay either this guy has a bad case of amnesia, or he is a very horrible liar.” I said.
“This guy must be a fraud, or something. How is it that he got a job here, but doesn’t know what state he left from?” asked Jake.
“There’s only one way to find out.” Said John with an evil looking smirk on his face.
“What you thinking?” asked Jake.
“Well, they keep all our records on file right?” he asked.
“If your talking about our permanent records, yeah.” I replied.
“Well they have to have a file on all the staff in Trinity.” Said John
“Now how are we going to get information like that?” I asked.
“We ask the secretary nicely,” John answered sarcastically.”We are going to break into school and get into the file library and dig up dirt on Mr. Reed.”
Alright not only did I have to look at two dead bodies twice today, but I have to break into my school and steal top secret information that can put me behind bars. I looked toward the window and I didn’t want any part of the break in.
“John, now I know you guys are thinking that we’re going to get caught. But, if you guys follow every word that I say in there, we will walk out as if we never walked in.” he explained.
“I’m in!” said Jake without hesitation
The two looked at me waiting for my response. I can’t do this, I have a good record in the school, and if we get caught we could have me arrested and expelled. And that means I could kiss Ivy League schools good-bye. And also on the list of trouble, what would my parents think? They would kille me if I was arrested for stealing paperwork.
“Randy?” called Jake. “I know that you don’t want to do this, but if John says he can get us in and out with no problem, then I say we take the opportunity headstrong.”
“I want to help guys but I don’t want to risk getting into the League.” I explained.
“How about this, if we get caught, I will take the heat and you guys don’t ever have to speak to me ever again. If we do get out clean I will make sure that we don’t get your hands back in dirt with this murder stuff. Sounds good?” asked John.
I had no other choice, I was working with my old friends again and I didn’t want to let them down, and I didn’t want to let the Gibbons down either. I extend my hand to John and we shake hands for the deal. We all promised to keep the murder scene and everything that we talked about to ourselves. The only people that were going to know about this were us. Tomorrow night at ten we were going to do the break in, I hope John has a plan.
It was another day in school to everyone else, but it was another spooky day with Mr. Reed. All I was thinking about was the Gibbons being dead and Reed lying to the students. What could he be hiding from us that he didn’t want all of us to know? I bumped into John in the hallway talking to a couple of his new ‘friends’. He calls me over to the side of the hallway, and his friends leave to their next classes. “Hey, man, I wanted make sure that you are cool with the break-in later.” He asked I wanted to back out and say no, but I didn’t want to leave Jake alone with John. Who knows who killed the Gibbons besides God and the Gibbons themselves is beyond me, but I wanted to find out if Mr. Reed had anything to do with it. “Yeah, I am in. Just as long as you keep the deal you made.” I replied. “For sure, a biker never backs out of his word.” We’re going to meet at the back door later on tonight at ten, and wear black and bring some gloves.” He said walking away. I continued walking to class and was nervous about what was going to happen with Reed today. I walked through the door and Mr. Reed was already sitting at the desk looking at his computer. He glances at the door and notices me entering class. “Mr. Ericson, I need a moment with you.” He said. My heart started beating again and I didn’t know he wanted to talk to me about. Hopefully he didn’t know about me going to the Gibbons house, or heard anything about us breaking into the school tonight. I know he shouldn’t know anything about it but I was too paranoid to think straight. I walked over to his desk and he looks at me with an angry look on his face. “Yesterday I found out something that was very disturbing to me,” He began. “I know I have been a little hard on you since I started here it’s very disrespectful to make accusations like that.” Oh no! He knew that we were thinking that he was the killer; he’s going to kill me. How did he hear? Was Jake’s house wired? Was he watching our conversation from the neighbor’s tree? I began to sweat badly and my heart began beating like a sports car again. I didn’t know what to say or how to explain what I was thinking. He pulls out a two paged paper with the IM messages that Jake and I had yesterday talking about Mr. Reed. I began to calm down and tried not to celebrate that it wasn’t my accusations about him being a killer. I looked at the papers and saw that he had every insult Jake and I circled in a red ink. “Randy, these are very harmful insults, and I can’t have this in my classroom.” He said. “I’m sorry Mr. Reed.” I said. “I know you are, and I will make sure that your mother knows that you apologized after I talk to her later on today.” He said. “You can’t call my mom, please Mr. Reed it’s not necessary.” I pleaded He slams his hand on the desk. “And I said that it is not going to be tolerated in this class room. Now, Mr. Ericson take your seat or I will do a lot worse than call your mother.” He said. I slowly walked away from Mr. Reed while he was staring a whole through me. The kids looked at Mr. Reed after he snapped, and there was a dead silence. I took my seat and Jake walked in and sat next to me. “Jeez, who else died?” he asked. Mr. Reed apologizes to the class and gives them the announcements for the day. I sat in my seat scared, and nervous. This thing with Mr. Reed isn’t just unprofessional; it was more personal toward me for some reason. I just couldn’t wrap my finger around what I have done to him besides embarrass him in an online chat site. I finished the rest of school in silence and in fear. Jake and I walked home and he was talking about the break in later on tonight. While on our way home, John’s car pulls up and he tells us to get in. We jumped in his car and he volunteered to give us a ride home. Hollywood Undead was playing in the car and John was mouthing the words while smoking a cigarette. He looks at me and saw that I was quieter than I was yesterday. “The matter with you, Randy? You looked like you say a ghost.” He asked. “Reed chewed him out today about an online chat that we had bashing him. Now he’s scared about what his mom’s going to do when he gets home.” Jake answered. “S**t, is that all? You act like you beat the crap out of a nerd or something.” He said. “What am I going to do? My mom never had trouble with me except the time I broke her Dolce and Cabana shades. And I was five when that happened.” I explained. “You’ll be fine. The worst that they can do to you is lecturing you and ground you and that’s about it. You got nothing to worry about.” He said. “Yeah, and us breaking into the school could be your revenge back to him.” Said Jake. “He’s right, bro.” said john. They were right about me breaking into the school with them, but what if they were wrong about my parents. “Hey I’m going to pick you guys a down the street from Jake’s pad. It would be a lot easier for us to sneak you guys back in and to get you guys out.” John said. We dropped off Jake in front of his house and ran inside. John drops me off and tells me not to be late getting out of the house. I walked in the house and my sister was in the living room with Rocky watching TMZ. She looks at me, and rushes off the couch and tells me that the school had called. “That Mr. Reed guy called today.” She said. “Did he talk to mom?” I asked. “Yeah, she’s in your room waiting for you.” She said. I was in deep trouble if my mom was waiting for me to come to my room. I walked upstairs slower than the Undertaker making his entrance to the ring, and she was sitting in the chair next to my computer. “Randy? What happened in school today.” She asked while I was standing at the doorway. “Mom I can explain it was just me and Jake fooling around, and I forgot to log off my computer. All we were doing was making fun of Mr. Reed’s suit jacket he had on.” I explained. “That’s not what he told me. He told me that you and Jake were calling him a gutless coward, and cold heart sergeant, and one of you guys called him a butt faced jerk wad.” She explained. “Mom, why would I call a teacher that, and Jake and I don’t even call people ……butt faced jerk wads.” I said. “So why would he tell me that over that you did?” she asked. “I don’t know mom. I told you that the guy doesn’t like me at all. He’s got something against me I don’t know what it is though.” I explained. She takes a deep breath and gets out of the chair and walks up to me. “Son, I am going to take you r word for this that is since you never lied to me before. But I think that it would be a good idea that we have Mr. Reed over for dinner after the open house this Friday.” She said. “I don’t know about this mom. He’s creepy and it’s something not right about him.” I said “Well when Friday comes around we will try to get some type of understanding between the two of you. Who knows? You two might end up like Eric and Mr. Pheeny from that one show.” She laughed. She gives me a hug and kisses me on the forehead. I was relieved that I only got a slap on the wrist about this. But the thing that was puzzling me was that Mr. Reed lying to my mom about what Jake and I were talking about. My mom leaves the room and stops at the stairs. “I won’t mention this to your father as long as you stay out of trouble. Deal?” she said. “Thanks mom.” I said. I closed my bedroom door and take my phone out of my pocket. I called Jake and filled him in on the conversation with my mom. “That’s insane man, why would he lie like that?” he asked. “I don’t know,” I said grabbing my black hoody and my baseball cap. “But this is going to get worse before it gets any better. I’ll see you tonight.” Later that on that night, I was getting ready for the break in I had throw on everything that I need that was black to make sure that I wasn’t going to be caught. I put my phone on vibrate and called Jake to see if he was ready. “Yeah.” He answered. “I’m going to climb down my window and make my way to your house in five minutes. Meet me in your ally.” I said. “Alright see you there.” He said hanging up his phone. I closed my phone silently and walked over to my window. I climbed out slowly and carefully to the rooftop and slowly shut the window with enough room for me to climb back up. I tip toed from the roof to the little ladder that my dad leave out to clean the gutters. Thank god he leaves the ladder out. I slide down the ladder and rushed to Jake’s house. I was so excited to do this after what my mom told me what Reed told her. I was upset at the fact that he would like on me about that, but as soon we find his files, we were going to make sure that he was going to be behind bars for a long time. I finally reached the ally way of Jake’s house. I counted the houses to make sure that I was waiting behind the right house, and not somebody else’s house that would have someone see me. I say Jake’s backyard and the big rose bush that was sitting in front of the gate. I called John to see if he was at the end of the street where we can meet him. He confirmed that he was there and I told him that we would be there in a few minutes. I sat and waited on Jake to come out, I was thinking about what could be in his file that has made him lie about his education path and his wife’s profession. Just as I was thinking about the file, Jake taps me on the shoulder and startled me. “Let’s go.” He says running to the end of the block. Jake was wearing black paint under his eyes with a black snowboarding hat and a pair of leather glove. The ting that was throwing me off about his get up was the turtle neck sweater he was wearing. I couldn’t tell if he was going to help us break into the school or audition to be on the 70’s version of James Bond. We see john’s car at the end of the alley and jump in. John’s pulls off and we make our way to the school. This time in his car it was completely different. There was no music playing and he wasn’t holding a cigarette in his hand. I could tell that he wanted to stay focused in the break in. He had a lot of pressure since he knows how to get into places without people knowing, and having to make sure that Jake and I don’t get tangled up in trouble. “So what your mom say about Reed calling.” He asked. “She told me that she said something completely opposite that we said about him in the messages.” I replied. “I told you that there was nothing to worry about.” he said with a smile. We pull up down the street from his house, and John turns of his head lights and parks the car across the street where the back entrance was. We all get out and run to the back door of the school. John takes out the same Boy Scout knife he used to opens the Gibbons door to open the back door of the school. We slowly walked in and looked around for any security or cameras that were looking for us. John stops us before we moved on and reminds us that we are supposed to listen to what he tells us to do. We walked down hall and see the lunchroom door. The offices were two halls away around the cafeteria, so we made sure that we stayed hidden. We turn the first corner and there was a school security guard sleeping in a chair with a ‘War and Peace’ book lying on his stomach. John told me and Jake to make our way down the hall and slowly walk past the security without waking him up. Jake and I walked down the hall slowly and carefully while the snoring guard was hold the book close to his stomach. As we get closer to the guard I noticed that he was wearing headphones in his ears with music blasting into them. We made our way around the corner and looked further down the hall and saw that there was nothing that between us and the office door. I told Jake to signal for John to make his way down the hall while Jake and I slowly walked over to the door. John used the Boy Scout knife again to open the door and gives us the grand entrance inside. “You got to show me how to do that, man.” Jake whispered. “Now’s not the time I will show you later.” He said walking inside the office closing the door behind him. The office was pitch black and we couldn’t see ourselves or anything for that matter. Jake pulled out a small flashlight and looked around the office for the filing room. I noticed a door to my left and asked Jake to flash the light on the door. I must have had the luck of the Irish in me tonight since the door that we were looking for was right next to me. John opened the door and Jake followed behind him with the light. There was a hall of file cabinets in the room with student files, teacher’s file and even janitor files. I noticed that there was a computer down the file cabinet lane. “Look for a cabinet with the letter R on it.” John told Jake. Jake walked down the hall looking for the R cabinet while John and I waited for the word. “You guys are doing great. If it was me and the prospects that I was working with in my club we would have screwed up five minutes after we walked in.” he said. “I just wanted things to go right and not get caught.” I replied. “Well, that deal sure as hell stands, bro.” he said. “Hey guys come on I found it.” Jake called. John and I rushed down the hall, and looked at the filing cabinet as if we were looking at a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. I rushed and opened the cabinet and started skimming through the files. There were so many with different names. I skipped down to the RE’s and saw Reed’s name on his file. I snatched it and looked at the big red stamp that said CONFIDENTIAL on it. I opened and there was a resume and an application inside. The resume was my most concern and it was a pretty long one. There were two pages that were stapled. The other page was a cover letter from a corrections office. “No way this guy was in jail.” John asked. I walked over to the computer desk while reading the letter from the state’s prison warden. Jake turned on the light started snoozing the computer. “What are you doing?” John asked. “I know where I can find out why he was in prison. It will only take a second.” Jake replied. “Alright but make sure it takes a second.” Said John The letter was very plain at the beginning and I skimmed through it to hopefully find out what he was in jail for. But the warden kept referring to him as Robert not Reed. Maybe he was married after he got out of prison. The letter said: Roberts had volunteered to do time around the facility in the chapel area for our worship services and has worked in our laundry making sure that the prisoners were wearing fresh clothes. The crimes that Mr. Roberts had committed were out of character like he was in the prison cell, but I am sure that he will be a clean fit after sitting in the psychologist office for the 2 years he served. “Hey what’s his name in the file?” Jake asked. “Isaac J. Reed. “Replied John after looking at the folder. “His name’s not in the system. That can’t be right.” Jake replied. I looked at the signature of the cover letter and the warden signed his name under a name Paul Roberts. “Wait a sec bro.” I said while looking at the name. “Look up Paul Roberts.” Jake typed in the name and pressed the enter key and the name popped up on the screen.
The screened showed the name with the photo mug shot of none other than Mr. Reed himself. There was a countless list of crimes under his name and different aliases that he was under in ten different states and two different countries.
“My god, this guy was insane.” Jake said.
“My dad’s charge is nothing compared to this.” John replied.
There several charge that he was guilty:
* Charged for illegal explosive in Austin, Texas
* Charged for murdering 10 people in Kentucky
* Charged for murdering 4 people in Las Angeles, California
* Charged for rape and murder in West Virginia, Arizona and in Rhode Island
The list went on from there, and the thing that I was wondering was; how is it that a guy with a dangerous record could become a teacher.
John looks over at the door and notices a light beaming at the door. From that point we had to hurry and the hell out of Trinity and fast. Jake hurried and shuts down the computer and turns off the monitor while John close the file cabinet that we left opened. I stuffed the file in my hoody and opened the window that was near the desk. I climbed out and waited for the others. Jake and jumps through the window as if he was in the Jesse White’s tumble team. John hurries and climbs out of the window and closes it slowly. We high tail it back to his car and pull of before anyone seen us.
We were in the car celebrating that we accomplished getting the file out and that we didn’t get caught. I couldn’t believe it through all the nerves kicking me in the gut and the fear of us getting caught, and we managed to get the golden prize out of there. John turns his headlights on while Jake took a hit out of his asthma pump.
“That was too close.” I said.
“Yeah but we managed to get out of there alive. That‘s all that matters. You guys did great.”John said.
He rushes us back home and drops us off where we met him. Jake and I rushed out the car and ran back home. He runs back home and slides in through his basement door. I rushed up the block and see that the bathroom light was on. I was praying that it was going to be off the second I walked up to the ladder. I didn’t want a good night to be spoiled by getting caught by my parents. I walked slowly through the back yard and Rocky was outside on the porch. He looks up at me and I was praying that he didn’t start barking and running toward me like a police dog. He puts his head back down and falls asleep, he must have had a rough day today. I look at the bathroom window and the light was off, and that meant that I was home free the second I walk up the ladder and through my bedroom window.
I quietly walk through my window and close it shut and remove all my black clothes and switched to my pajama pants. I hide the file in my desk drawer, and jumped into bed and fell asleep.
The next morning, I met up with Jake and walked to school. All we kept talking about was how great the break in was, and how much fun it was. While on our way there, I had that same creepy follower feeling and looked over my shoulder and it was the Corvette again. I told Jake not to turn around and to hurry and walk down the street to see if the car was going to follow us. Every two blocks I turned my shoulder and the Corvette was behind us on our trail. Who was in the car and why was he following us? We were a block away from the school and the Corvette turns a corner. Jake and I ran to the school to make sure that the car would not pick up our trail again. We stopped at the school entrance and catch our breath.
“Who’s in that car?” Jake asked.
“I don’t know, but this has got—“I stopped and looked at the parking entrance and saw the Corvette was pulling into the parking lot.
Jake turns his attention to the parking lot, and watches the car. This had to end; we needed to know who the hell was in that car and we needed to know why he was following us. The driver door opens and Mr. Reed walks out with his suitcase slamming the door shut. He followed Jake and I for days, and now knows where we live.
“This is going to be weird.” Jake said.
“Tell me about it.” I replied.
We hurried back inside the school building before first period had started.
Classes later, I walked over to my locker and I seen Heather walk to the water fountain. I was turning the dial on the lock while she was drinking water out of the fountain. It was as if I was watching a goddess drink from the fountains of gods. I stopped turning the dial and continued watching her. John stopped by my locker and watched along with me, but I didn’t notice that he was standing next to me.
“Wonderful view ain’t it?” said John.
I jumped after he startled me, and I checked my mouth just in case I didn’t droll all over myself.
“Relax dude, I was just going to ask you what you did to that file we snagged yesterday?” he asked.
“It’s safe. I put it in my desk drawer no one is going to find it.” I replied. I said while turning my attention back over to Heather.
“I know her.” Said John.
“You do?” I asked.
“Yeah, I could talk to her for you and see if I can get her to look your way.” He replied.
“That would be great bro.” I said.
“Alright, give me a second.” He says walking over to the fountain.
He taps her on the shoulder and she smile and talks to him. I didn’t understand what he was saying to her, but I wish I could read lips. The next thing I know she was looking at me smiling, and John walked back toward my locker.
“What you tell her?” I asked.
“told her that you were interested in her, and other good stuff that made her looking at you the way she’s looking at you now.” He laughed. “But seriously we got to dig deeper in that record books on Reed. Can we meet at your house tonight?” he asked.
“Sure thing, I will let Jake know and we will look more into this.” I replied.
“Cool, I’ll see you later.” He said walking away to his next class.
I opened my locker and smiled while I was getting book bag out, and placed some books and folders that I had to take back for homework. The next thing I know, there was a big hand that grabbed me by the shoulder that startled me. I turned around and it was Mr. Reed with a smirk on his face.
“Sorry for scaring you Mr. Ericson. I thought I would let you know that if you disrupt me and disrespect me again. There was going to be severe consequences.” He said tightening his grip on my shoulder.
He releases my shoulder and walks down the hall to the office. I had enough of him and his threats and bullying he’s been pressing on me. I had to find a way to dodge him and find a way to stay away from his bad side until the dinner on Friday. I slammed my locker door shut and walked to my gym class. This week was dodge ball week, and I thought it would let out some stress from all of this. I got dressed in the locker room and walked out to the gymnasium. I waited for attendance to be called and looked around for Jake in the class next to mine. He walks into the gym in his uniform and looked like he saw a ghost. The coaches took our attendances and told us to stand in line for a pickup game. I asked Jake what was the matter and he said that he bumped into Mr. Reed a little bit after I did.
“He was all weird man, he was talking about something bad is going to happen since we made fun of him. I don’t know what he’s going to do but I don’t what he’s going to do but I’m scared Randy.” He said.
“Hey, man, relax. I know he’s a little creepy, but he’s going to be in jail soon. We’re not going to get hurt. And plus, he was probably saying that just to scare you or something, so just relax.” I explained to him. I knew that this whole thing was scaring me too, but I didn’t want that to show to Jake. I had to be the strong one out of the group.
The teams were split into two and we took our opposite sides of the wall and had stood behind the red line and waited for the coach to blow the whistle. Jake and I were on separate teams and we decided to take care of our competition before we took each other out of the game. Jim Tarver was on his team and I knew that I was going to be in for a fight in class today. The coach blows the whistle and the red ball war began. I grabbed a ball and threw it at the guy that was trying to take the ball before me, and he was eliminated. Jake catches a ball and takes out the guy who threw it and hits a guy with the ball he caught and eliminated him.
Five minutes later, it was a two on two battle with Jake and Tarver against me and some random guy that was on my side. Jake see a ball roll over to his side and rushed over to grab it. He throws it at me and hits me in the ribs; I was out on the sideline. I had sat down and watch the rest of the game and the kid that was on my team threw a ball at Jake, but he deflected it and it hit a basketball rim that he was standing under. The rim began to shake very loosely and I began to panic and called Jake. He was too into the game and he wasn’t hearing me call his name. The rim starts to collapse and glass from the backboard breaks and crashes all over Jake and the gym floor. The game quickly stop and I rushed over to check on my friend. One of the coaches yelled for someone to call the nurse and an ambulance. The coach called Jake’s name to see if he was conscious, but he was motionless.
The ambulance arrived at the school, and checked Jake to see if he has a pulse. The put him on the stretcher and rushed him to the ambulance truck. How was the rim so loose? I understand that this place is old and falling apart but the way that rim fell was just unbelievable. I ran to the locker room and switched my clothes. I snatched my book bag out of the locker and ran to the principal’s office to call my mom. I rushed inside and asked the secretary for the phone, but she ignored me and kept typing on her computer. I asked again nicely for the phone and she still kept typing away on the computer.
“Hey!” I yelled.
She stops typing and removes her glass and walks over to me.
“What is your problem? Yelling in here like you lost your mind.” She said.
“I have to use the phone it’s an emergency.” I explained
“Well that doesn’t mean that you have to bust in here and yell at people now you are going to have to sit down and wait like the rest of the kids that have to use the phone.” She demanded.
I looked at the kids that she pointed at that were waiting for the phone, and there were at least six kids sitting in chairs waiting to use the phone. What the hell was wrong with her? I have a friend out on a stretcher and she was worried about order in the damn school. My face began to turn hot and I was pissed off and I couldn’t take it anymore. My anger just switched and I became a totally different person.
“I’m not going to wait.” I said.
“Excuse me?” she snarled.
“I said that I am NOT going to wait to use the phone. My friend just got carried out on a stretcher and I need to get a ride to the hospital. Now, I came in here to obey the NO CELL PHONE policy in the school to call my mother from the phone you guys provide for us to use. Now I don’t’ want to have my phone snatched by a staff member and I am not going to wait for a phone that an ignorant, lazy, pathetic witch that won’t allow me to make a two minute phone call. Now, I am going to use this phone and call my mother.” I said walking over to the office phone.
I started dialing my mother’s phone number while Principal Diaz walked inside the office. The secretary tells him what I said to her and he rushes over to me and stood over my shoulder and made my phone call to my mom. She said that she was going to have the school call me down to the office and we were going to go to the hospital the second we leave. I hung up the phone and principal Diaz blocks me from leaving the office.
“Mr. Ericson I am surprised at you, why did you just disrespect my secretary like that?” he asked.
“I had to make an emergency phone call to my mom.” I replied.
“Well, there were other kids that had to make an ‘emergency’ phone call. Was it that important?” he asked.
“If it concerns my friend just leaving the school on a stretcher and I am worried, then yeah it is important to me.” I replied.
“She didn’t tell me that part.” He says while looking at his secretary. “We will discuss this later, go ahead and get to your next class.”
I walked out of the office hot tempered and worried about my friend. The bell rings and third period was dismissed. The halls begin to flood and word was getting around about Jake. I walked upstairs to go to home room. I couldn’t believe that my friend was hurt like that. There had to be a reason for why that rim fell on him like that. I walked into Mr. Reed’s class and he was writing on the board. I took a seat and kept my mouth shut while the other kids were entering the class. The bell rings and the kids are talking about the incident that happened in the gym. Mr. Reed takes control of the class.
“Alright class, settle down. I know there’s a lot of talk about Jake’s condition,” he says. “but I am sure that he will be just fine.” He said turning to the board.
I was so angry that I didn’t look at the computer and I didn’t even think about nothing else but Jake. He was like a brother to me, and if I lost him I was going to be the only shadow in the school’s radar.
“Now tomorrow we are going is the school’s open house, and I am really looking forward to meeting your parents. Especially yours Mr. Ericson.” He said with an evil smirk.
I was so tired of him and his threats he had been making toward me. I wanted to smack the smirk off his face I stared him down with an evil glare. I never wanted to threaten a teacher, but this guy was not a teacher at all. He was a monster on the prowl to ruin my life for no reason, but I wasn’t going to let him break me down.
“What’s the matter Mr. Ericson?” he asked walking over to me. “Are you scared that you might lose your friend in a matter of minutes?” he whispered.
I stood up from my chair and stood face to face with him. “You know what?” I started.
The intercom bell ring and calls for Mr. Reed.
“Mr. Reed can you seen Randy Ericson to the office, his mother is here for him.” Said the secretary.
“Sure thing he will be right down.” He said with a smile to the intercom.
He looks back at me with that evil smile on his face.
“You’d better hurry and catch your mother,” he said.
I was making my way to the doo and he stopped me and said: Tell your buddy Jake ‘Who’s bringing in the RED carpet now’.
The room fell silent, and the class was confused at why Mr. Reed said what he just said to me. He had to have something to do with the gym accident. But, I couldn’t do anything about it, the damage was already done. I had no other choice but to face it like a man and deal with it. I walked out of the classroom and made my way to the main office to meet up with my mother. I walked down the stairs and saw her waiting by the office on her phone. She was probably telling dad that we were going to the hospital. She hangs up the phone and runs towards me.
“Are you alright, son,” she asked.
“Yeah, mom, let’s just hurry to the hospital before anything else crazy happens.” I said.
We went to the parking lot, and she unlocked the trunk for my book bag. I looked over at the teacher’s parking lot and the creepy Corvette was gone, but that meant that Mr. Reed had left. I looked at my phone and the time was 11:47am. It was just the start of fourth period, and Reed was gone already? I closed the trunk and jumped in the passenger seat. I couldn’t worry about Reed and his ignorance; I had a friend in the hospital. My mom starts the car and we make our way to the hospital.
Ten minutes later, I received a text from John saying that the cops were lurking around the school interrogating the custodian trying to figure out how the basketball rim became so loose. Just like the police nowadays; they always get the job half right and it bugs me. They should always investigate the whole staff not just the one that are a coincidence of committing a crime. My mom turned into the parking lot of the hospital and I was anxious to see my friend. We jumped out of the car and rushed inside to the waiting room. Once we made it inside I looked and seen Jake’s parents sitting in the waiting room. My mom walked over to Mrs. Avery and asked about his condition.
“They just finished operating on him. They found a shard of glass in a main artery and they can’t find a way to stop the bleeding.” Said Mrs. Avery holding back her tears.
I couldn’t see myself without my friend…..my brother. He’s the best person that a guy like me would have. I had to take a seat and think through this.
My mom and I sat in the waiting room with the Avery’s until the head surgeon told us the news about Jake, good news I hope. I sat and watch Mrs. Avery crying in her husband’s arms, I felt sorry for her about her son. I was holding back my tears on the whole situation. I never cried much as a child only if I was in very bad pain or heartbroken. I thought about the good times I had with Jake; like the time we first met in pre-k. I was sitting at the lunch table by myself eating carrot stick and one of them fell on the ground. Jake was the first person to ever talk to me. He sat next to me with his Buzz Lightyear lunchbox and asked me if I liked the movie Toy Story. We had a huge conversation about the movie and became friends from that point. He saw the carrot I dropped on the ground and took one out of his lunchbox and gave it to me. I thanked him and he said ‘my mom says that sharing is good for friendships’.
From that day were clicked as best friends and we always had each other’s backs. He never left my side and I never left his side. Me losing him would be like losing a brother. The doctor left from the surgery room and made his way down the corridor with the news. We stood near us and took a deep sigh.
“Mr. and Mrs. Avery,” the doctor called.
“Yes,” said Mr. Avery.
“The artery was severely damaged and we couldn’t stop the bleeding for us to operate on it. I’m sorry to say this, but your son didn’t make it through. I’m sorry.” He said walking away from the Averys.
My heart sunk into the pit of my stomach; I couldn’t believe this at all. I lost a person that was the only person that I had as a friend. Mrs. Avery’s started crying harder after hearing the news, and my mom held me close to her. I felt a tear fall down my cheek and knew that I knew that I wasn’t in pain, but I was heartbroken that I lost a good friend. I told my mom that I didn’t want to be here anymore and that I wanted to go home. I had enough of this! I lost my favorite teacher and now my best friend. I will not have anyone else be taken away from me because of this jerk. My mom helped me walk to the car and held my hand all the way there. We jump back into the car and pull out of the parking lot; I didn’t say a word at all the rest of the day.
Once we got home, I went to my room and slammed the door shut. My mom went to the kitchen and started making dinner. I sat in my room all day looking on my Facebook page, staring at pictures that me in Jake were in. There were Halloween pictures of us when he was Buzz and I was Woody; when our dads took us to our first rock concert on my thirteenth birthday; our first day going to Trinity as freshman. They were all memorable and I just kept crying looking at the pictures. My phone started to ring on my desk and I threw it on my bed. I didn’t want to talk to no one, and I didn’t want to leave my room. I continued looking at the pictures and I hear a knock on the door, but I didn’t want to answer it.
“Jake,” my mother called. “John’s here to see you. You want to open the door and let him in?”
I thought for a moment, and figured that the only person that I have left to help me put Mr. Reed in jail was John. I told my mom to let him in and she opens the door and shows John inside.
“Uhm, son, if your friend is staying I can put down and extra plate for dinner.” She said.
I looked at John and he nods his head that he will stay for dinner.
“Yeah, it’s alright.” I said.
She leaves the room closing the door behind her. John pulls up a chair and sits down with a sigh. Hopefully, he knew something about what the police found out.
“Hey, your mom told me about what happened. I’m sorry about Jake.” he said.
“I know, it’s just kind of rough losing someone that has been in your life that long.” I said.
“Well I dug up some from what the cops investigated from the school.” he said.
“What happened?” I asked.
“They talked to all of his teachers, including Reed, and so for all of their alibi’s are clean. They are going to talk to the custodians at tomorrow’s Open House.” He explained.
Why did they just only talk to teachers about the accident? They should have looked at the file on Reed and his past murders and followed up on that. My anger began to boil again, so I grabbed the file and opened it. I called my mother for her to look at it with us. She was the only person that would believe me and John about him.
“What’s the matter?” she asked entering my room.
“We have something to tell you,” I began. “I found some information about Mr. Reed and I think that you should take a look at.”
I hand her the file and John looks at me like I told the cops that I stole it. She reads the cover letter and looked confused.
“Who’s Isaac Roberts?” she asked.
“That’s was Mr. Reed’s old name before he started working for our school.” John said.
“Where did you get this?” she asked.
“We…” I looked over at John and he nods his head for me to tell my mom where we got it from. “We got it from the school.”
“This is confidential information, you guys could go to jail for this.” she cried.
“I know Mrs. Ericson, but John was worried about the school’s safety.” Said John.
“Then you talk to the principal about him.” She cried.
“Mr. Diaz doesn’t even do anything for himself mom. Just please hear us out.” I asked.
I went to the website that Jake found Reed’s criminal records, and showed my mom the long shopping list of crimes he committed. She covered her mouth in surprise and looked at the whole list of crimes.
“Why haven’t you told me or your father about this, Randy?” she asked.
“You guys wouldn’t have believed me about this. I told you that this guy has something against me; I just don’t know what it is. Why are you are so upset about this?” I asked.
“Son…..I use to date Mr. Reed back in high school.” she said,
I couldn’t believe the word that had came out of her mouth. I couldn’t believe my mother use to date a conniving criminal back in high school.
“Wait you dated a criminal in high school?” John asked.
“He wasn’t a criminal back then. He was a good kid when we dated, until he started changing.” She said.
“What do you mean change mom?” I asked.
She closed the bedroom door and places the file back on the desk. She sat on the bed and took a deep sigh.
“It was homecoming in my sophomore year, and it was going to be a year that Isaac and I dated. But, I wanted to break up with him after we had a huge fight about nothing a few weeks before that. He and I were at the school’s football field and were sitting on the stands. I had to tell him that I wanted nothing more to do with him. He was changing in a bad way that I didn’t want no part of. He got upset when I told him that I didn’t want anything else to do with him and he started yelling at me, and scaring me. The next thing you know he started choking me and slapping me. I yelled for help, and that was when your father had saw me in the stands and where we first met. He rushed up the bleachers and tackled Isaac down and started beating him down.”
“After your father reported Isaac to the principal and got him arrested, your dad and I were started dating from then on. We were high school sweet hearts and never seen Isaac again. She explained.
My mother dating Reed wasn’t the only thing that shocked me throughout her story, but the fact that he put his hands on my mother was another shocker that I had to deal with.
“Wait, what about the dinner after open house?” I asked.
“Well, the dinner is still on. Your father wants to talk to him but if he looks at his face he is going to instantly knows who he is.” Said my mom.
“You guys have to find a way for him to eat and leave. He can’t stay here alone with you guys.” Said John.
“How are we going to do that?” I asked.
“Call the cops and have them waiting outside the house for him. Once he leaves give the signal to the cops and they are going to tackle him down and cuff him. And then, Randy, you give them the file and have them take him into custody.”
“I will make a call to the police. Randy, you keep that file in this room and make sure your father doesn’t see this.” she said.
“You guys need anything, you call me.” John said.
“Thanks, man.” I replied.
“The least I can do for Jake. We owe this to him…we all do.” John said.
Tomorrow night was all planned out. I was hoping that it was going to go right like the school break in.
The next morning, I woke up with a bad feeling in the pit of my gut. My stomach was turning slowly and painfully after I heard my mother’s horror story that she told me and John last night. I sat down in the kitchen while my mom was fixing my plate of breakfast. I never thought my mother could have gone through something like that. She was always the normal girl in high school that never got into a fight or never gotten into any type of trouble. I couldn’t look at her like that anymore. She seems a lot stronger than I have ever thought of her before. She sits the plate in front of me, and the aroma of pancakes, eggs, toast and bacon started slowing down the painful twist in the pit of my gut. I struggled eating after the first, and then finished eating like normal. My mom sat next to me while I was eating and gave me a bit of a pep talk before I walked out before I went to school.
“Son,” she started holding my hand. “I talked to a detective after we talked last night. They are going to send an undercover car under surveillance after we come home from the Open House. I wanted to make sure that you were ready to go through with this.”
I took a deep breath, and I had to think for a second. My mom was ready for this more than I was. I had to be as brave as her, and do the right thing for her….and for Jake.
“I want this guy in jail more than anything, mom.” I said with a smile.
She smiled back at me and gave me a hug whispering ‘I love you’ in my ear. I told her I loved her back and grabbed my backpack and walked out of the house. It was awkward walking to school alone without Jake telling me jokes and talking about the crazy videos that he saw on YouTube. I know he’s watching me telling me not to be afraid. Things are going to get better along the way, starting today.
During the first few classes I was a bit less focused than usual. I was more focused about the outcome after tonight’s dinner and whether or not if things are exactly going to look better. I didn’t participate in gym and had my eyes set on the rim that fell on Jake. The rim was replaced with a new rim that looked like the NBA had shipped them over to our school.
The bell rings for me to go to home room, and I knew that it was going to be the worst place to be during today. I took my time getting to my locker to switch my books for my next set of classes. I looked around to see if John was going to visit me before I went to home room. But he was nowhere in sight, he must have already went upstairs in his home room. I switched my books and walked upstairs and bumped into John on the stairway to the second floor.
“Hey, bro. I was just on my way to your locker.” He said looking at my face. “You okay? Dude you look like you’re going to hurl on my shoes.”
“No, I’m okay. You’re still coming to the house for dinner, right?”
“Yeah, for sure. I wasn’t going to miss this for the world, bro.” he replied.
“Alright, I better get to class before the bell rings.”
“Alright meet me at the parking lot, I’ll give you a lift home.” He said walking to his class.
I was glad that John was going to be at the dinner with me. At least I knew that not only my family was going to be safe, but my only friend was going to be safe as well. I walked inside the classroom and Mr. Reed was sitting at his desk. I didn’t want to talk to him nor face him so I sat down and just played solitaire on my computer. The class bells rings and he walks over to the door and closes it.
“Alright class,” he said walking back to his desk. “Tonight is a special night here at Trinity. Tonight is the Open House.” He announced.
The other students filled the classroom with sighs and lip smacking. They knew as well as I did that Open House is just a code for secret trick for parents to chat with the teachers and find out what we have been doing so far this week. I wasn’t worried about that though, since my mother was the only person that knew the truth that had been going on with me this week.
“That means, that I will get to talk to the parents who have kids that are tardy, the parents that have kids that don’t show up at all, and of course the parents who have been nothing but a pain ever since I have started here.” He said looking at me.
This guy was very much trying to ruin my life here, and I barely graduated out of here. I can’t wait to see the cops slap handcuffs, throw him behind bars and throw away the key. If I’m lucky, maybe they would give him the chair. After a few minutes of rambling, the bell finally rang and I was off to my next class. I finally walked out of the class room without being threatened by that psycho.
After school, I went to the student parking lot to meet up with John at his car. I noticed he wasn’t sitting on the hood of his car smoking a cigarette with MetalSkullz blasting out of his car. I waited near his car and called his phone to make sure things were okay with him.
“Yeah?” he answered.
“Hey, John, where are you at?”
“Yeah, sorry bro that prick Reed got me in the office with him and the principle. Once I get done talking to them I will see you there.” He replied.
I hang up my phone and leaned on the bumper of the car and waited. Something told me that tonight was going to get a lot worse before things get better.
Meanwhile in the office……
I couldn’t believe that these jerks put me in this office. All I did was make a simple joke after that jerk Reed said insulted me. I know I’m not dumb, but the job description of a teacher doesn’t involve insulting a student’s intelligence. Where ever these two jerks were, I wished they hurried up and get here so I can roll with Randy and his family to the open house. I heard the door open, and it was only Reed coming inside the office with a look like he wanted to sock me in the face. So, I stood up and kept my composure. I kept my hands in my pocket sqeezing my phone in my hand.
“Alright, Jonathan, I am going to make this clear. You and Randy have nothing but the biggest nuisance since I have started here. I have tried to be nice and let you slide with your childish insults and you stupid snickering in my classroom.” He said.
“If you got a problem with me just say it.”
“Oh, I do have a problem with you, and the Gibbons, and Jake. And if you keep testing me Jonathan, you’re going to be ending up just like them…dead.”
“is that a threat.” I asked
“Consider it whatever you want. Just know that here, I’m your superior and you follow my rules.” He said with a smirk.
Just as the tension was building up, Principle Diaz walks into the office and seen me and Reed face to face.
“Alright gentlemen, take a seat. I don’t want a brawl in my office.” He said sitting behind his desk.
I decided to stand while Reed took a seat next to me. Diaz look at me while and asked what wsa the reason for me being in his office this time.
“Mr. Diaz, I was teaching the class today and Jonathan took it upon himself to insult me in front of the whole class repetitively.” Said Reed.
“Is that true, son?” Diaz asked.
“That’s only half of the story, dude. I was in the classroom and I was actually trying to learn something. Then when I asked a question, Mr. Jackass here started insulting me.”I replied.
“Son, you’re going to have to watch your language in my office. Mr. Reed you obligation of a teacher is to TEACH the children, not belittle them. As for you Jonathan apart from the other bigger problems you have been involved in this school. I can’t give you detention since we are going to have the Open House tonight. I am sure your father is to be up here and is going to talk to Mr. Reed himself and try to come up with a solution between you two to get along better. Now gentlemen, you are both free to go. I have to finish checking on the rest of the preparations for tonight.” Said Diaz.
Reed walked out slamming the office door in my face, and I opened the door and made my way out. Reed gets back into my face again in the hallway.
“You got away with this one this time, but rests assure by the end of the night you will not be missed when I end you. Not even your father,” he said.
The only thing that was holding me back was the thought of me seeing this prick in handcuffs while the cops take him into the squad car. I had to hurry back to my car and fill randy in about what just happened.
Back at the Student Parking Lot…
Fifteen minutes later, I see John storming out of the school. Whatever happened in there I hoped he didn’t do anything to mess up the plan for tonight. He unlocks the car and tells me to jump in.
“What happened?” I asked.
“This guy thinks he’s so damn clever, huh?” he replied jumping into the car taking out his Iphone.
“What are you talking about?”
“That prick just talked a lot heat in there. He even admitted to killing Jake and the Gibbons.“ he replied.
“Was Diaz there when he said it?”
“Nope, he came in after me and Reed starting heating up.” He replied.
John looks at his phone and noticed that the recording app was activated on his phone. He looked at the phone with a confused look on his face.
“What’s wrong?” I asked.
He hit the playback button and it played when John and Reed were in the office going at it. The playback even had Reed admitting that he killed the Gibbons and Jake. John and I looked at each other and knew that Mr. Reed’s career was coming to an end.
“Do you know what we can do with this if we take this to the detectives with the file at the house?” I asked.
“We’re talking twenty-five years to life with this clown. We got this in the bag.” Said John starting the car.
We pulled out of the parking lot and started making our way to my house. We went from having a pretty bad day to having the greatest news in the world. We knew that the end was near for Reed
Later that night, my mom spoke to both me and John in my room and we played the tape with Reed admitting what he did to Jake and the Gibbons. She told John to make sure that the playback was saved and locked in his phone for the detectives to hear. My dad walked up stairs and met up with us in my room.
“Hey, what’s going on?” he asked standing at the doorway.
“Nothing, we were just talking about John getting in trouble with Randy’s teacher.” Mom replied
“What happened?” he asked.
“There was just some misunderstanding, sir.” John replied
“Well, hopefully we can clear a bridge between the three of you guys, so you guys don’t have any more trouble with this guy. I’m going to be downstairs. When you guys are ready let me know.” Dad said walking to the stairs.
“Honey, wait!” cried my mom running to my dad.
“What’s the matter?” he asked.
“There’s something we have to tell you.” She said walking him back into my room.
John and I were nervous about telling my dad about what we had been going through. My dad sat down in my office chair and took a deep breath.
“Honey, remember Isaac from high school?” my mom asked.
“Of course, he was the jerk that I saved you from.” He replied.
“Well the kids had been doing some snooping around and found out something that may be the reason why he has been harassing Randy.” She said handing him the file.
My dad looked over the file and looked at the name and I turned on the computer and showed him the rap sheet that reed has had over the years after they graduated out of high school. He was shocked more than he was upset that we were hiding this from him.
“What the hell is he doing as your teacher.” He asked.
“We don’t know but we know that he will be behind bars for good tonight” I said.
“Now, Tim we have to keep our heads cool for dinner we already got the detective coming to the house and the boys got his confession on John’s phone. All we have to do is calm and he will go away peacefully.” Said mom.
“Peacefully, peacefully! He has put these boys through hell throughout the beginning of the school year and you’re telling me that you want me to let his guy walk out of our house in hand cuffs in peace?” he cried.
“Dad, relax. That’s the only way that we are going to put this guy behind bars. Just trust me on this.” I said.
His face began to tell me that he beginning to calm down. I knew that my father wanted retribution as such as I did but it wasn’t going to solve anything but make matters worse. One of could be next on Reed’s hit list. He storms downstairs and tells my mom to meet him in the truck in ten minutes. John and I were going to the school in his car.
“I’m sorry son, but I can’t hide things like this from your father.” My mom explained.
“No mom, in understand. Let’s just hope he’s not going to go overboard at the school.” I laughed. I gave her a hug and told her that we will meet her at the school.
John and I walked out of the house and sat in his car before we left. He reached in the glove compartment and pulled out a .45 and started putting bullets in it.
“What are you doing?” I asked.
“Just taking safety precautions, bro. I am not going to lose another friend.” He said loading the gun and putting it inside his vest pocket.
He started the car and drove to the school, while my parents were driving behind us.
A few minutes later we were in the school, and we mingled with some of the other parents that were there. They had a memorial prepared for Jake and his passing; we all looked at the memorial and took a moment of silence. My dad pats me on the shoulder for comfort and my mom kisses me on the cheek. We all walked from the memorial to my home room class. Mr. Reed was in his room with a few angry disciplining their kids in the class with lectures. He was speaking to another parent – or should I say ruining another student’s day – about their attendance to Home Room. He notices me and my family walking through the door and told the family to wait a few seconds to welcome my parents into the room.
“Ah, I finally meet the Ericsons in the flesh. It is a pleasure to meet you both.” He began shaking my mother’s hand.
“Yeah, nice to meet you too.” My father said shaking his hand with a tight grip.
“So, how has my son bee in your class? You know he is still the second best student in the school.” my mom began.
“Well, Mr. Ericson has been a good student, but there have been some trouble between the two of us but I am sure we have passed that rough tide and moved on.” Replied Reed.
“I highly doubt it.” Whispered my dad.
“Excuse me?” asked Reed.
“I said these are some highly performing computers you got in here. Great Manufactures by the way.” Said my dad.
“Well, I am sure that once the festivities are done here we can all enjoy a meal at our home.” Mom said.
“I am actually on my last pair of parents once I get done talking to them, I will pack my things in my car and we can all head.” Said Reed.
My parents had stepped out into the hall and talked about my dad’s ‘slipping remark that almost cost us to get into trouble. John and I stepped to the side of the class and sat down in by a desk.
“What in the hell was that about? He just went from the devil himself to Mr. Perfect in front of your parents.” Said John.
“Trust me they are falling for that nice guy crap. Just keep your cool, bro.”
My mom and dad walked back into the class and Reed approaches them again and was all ready to go back to the house. John and I followed them out the class room door and made out way to the parking lot. We all got back into our cars and drove back to the house. Once I got out of the car I, I looked over my shoulder and saw the detectives were secretly watching us go inside the house. I walked over to the front door pulling out my keys. I opened the door and Rocky bolts to me as usual. My sister was in the living room watching MTV like she always does every night with a bowl of cookies and cream ice cream. Mom always hated her eating sweets before dinner. Rocky looked at Mr. Reed and started barking at him as if he was a burglar in the house.
“I don’t know what’s getting into him.”I said over the loud barking. “he always kind to new people.” I said in a joking manner.
“My wife’s going to finish up preparing the food we can sit at the table and talk for a bit.” Said my dad.
My mom walked past my sister and snatches her ice cream and told her to help her with dinner in the kitchen. We walked in the kitchen and took our seats. The room was in complete silence, scary silence. The only thing that you can hear is my mom and my sister chatting and the clattering on plates and silverware. My dad clears his throat and turns to John.
“So, John how’s your old man doing?” he asked.
“He’s good, he’s actually thinking about putting another charter out into Arizona.” Jon replied.
“Oh that’s great,” he said with a smile turning toward Reed. “John’s father is the President of the Psycrows. Nice biker club. They take care of some of the ‘riff raff’ in town.”
“I wasn’t aware of that.” Reed said.
“Yeah, I’m one of the good uprising prospects that ever joined the club.” John said.
“That’s good Jonathan. I’m sure you will be a big hit in the club.” Reed said with a fake smile.
My mother and sister brought the plates and silverware to the table and was setting up for dinner. There was an evil stare and bad tension going on between my dad and Reed. I hope it just won’t get in the way of our plan.
During dinner, John and I were telling old stories about the crazy antic we were up to in school. Like the time I had tried to stop eating glue in Ms. Johnson’s class in the second grade. We were only entertaining my family to make the scene look normal, but it was great talking to them and spending time with them. Mr. Reed, on the other hand, was at the other end of the table eating his food without laughing like the rest of us. My mother noticed that his glass was getting empty, and offered him another glass of cranberry juice. “Yes, please.” He said moving his glass closer to her. Rocky heard his voice and rushed near his seat and started barking at Mr. Reed. He was so startled by the bark that he bumped the table and my mom dropped the juice glass all over Reed’s shirt and lap. I left the table and called Rocky over to me. He rushes over and I walked outside to the backyard. Meantime, my mom told my sister to take Mr. Reed to the bathroom to help him clean up. “It’s no problem Mrs. Ericson, really. There are no need for apologies.” He said. “Apologies are necessary; I don’t know what’s gotten into Rocky.” She replied. “Mom, do we have any baking soda in the kitchen? I think that can get it out.” Said Tara. “Yeah just grab the box out of the refrigerator and make sure you use warm water.” My mom replied. Tara and Reed left the dining room while my mom started cleaning up the rest of the mess in the dining room. I sat outside with Rocky for a couple of minutes and rubbed his back telling him good job for scaring Mr. Reed at the dinner table. Even though he wasn’t part of the original plan in getting Reed arrested, I was glad that he knew a crook from crowd of people. I wondered if he is the same with a crowd of democratic and one republican. Back inside the house, my mom and dad were finishing cleaning up the table. “I love Rocky.” Dad laughed. “I do too, but he shouldn’t have been put outside after the first time he started barking at him.” Mom explained. “No way, if Rocky can smell a crooked bastard within a mile. He’s better off being a guard dog than a pet.” Dad cried. “Shhhhh. Not so loud he can hear you. Now, I understand that you are upset, Tim. But, we have to play this as if we are hunting. We have to be patient.” Mom said. “She’s right Mr. Ericson, my dad has always told me that a smart offense has good defense.” Said John. Just after he said that, there was a loud scream from the bathroom. My mom and dad ran to the bathroom to see what the commotion was. My mom opened the bathroom door and Tara was knocked out on the floor while Mr. Reed was checking her pulse. “What in the hell happened in here?” Dad cried. “I don’t know. She bumped her head on the tub I think.” Reed said. “Honey, call an ambulance,” dad said while carrying Tara to the hall. I rushed back into the house after hearing the scream and asked John what happened. My mom rushed from the stairs to the kitchen. John and I followed her to know what was going on. Once she made the call for an ambulance, she told us that Tara was knocked unconscious in the bathroom. John and I rushed upstairs and looked around the hallway, and there was no one there. It was empty and quiet like at the Gibbon’s house. My mom followed us in the room and looked around for dad and Tara. “They were just in the hall. Your dad was going to give CPR to Tara to gain consciousness.” Said my mom. “Wait where’s Mr. Reed?” I asked A few seconds later the power was shut off and there was nothing but dead silence and barely any light in the house. “This is not good.” John said. “What happened to the detectives that were supposed to be in here?” I asked. “We can’t get in contact with them unless we walked outside and gave them the signal.” Mom said. We were screwed from this point. I was nervous before the lights went out and my dad and Tara were missing, but now the cops that we called to help don’t even know what the hell is going on in here. I had to go outside and warn them that we have a problem in the house. I told John to protect my mother while I was going to inform the police that there was something weird going on, and they need to come inside and help us find my family and Reed before anything else strange happens tonight. I rushed outside and knocked on the driver’s door, but no one answered. They looked like they were asleep and the radio was still on. The window was open wide enough for me to stick my arm through and unlock the door from the inside. Once I opened the door I starting shaking the detective in the driver’s seat. He wasn’t responding at all, I ran over to the passenger side and tried the same thing with the other detective. They were both knocked out and stepped back, but I knocked over a bottled with the back of my foot. I turned back and it was a bottle of chloroform, and I put the pieces together. Reed had to have known that the cops were going to arrest him tonight and saw the cops on his way in and knocked them out. I wasn’t going to let him get away with this tonight, and I am not going to let him get away like this. I took the walkie out of the car and called for back-up and gave them the address. I told them everything that was going on in the house and they were going to send four squad cars down to the house but it was going to take some time. I ran back inside the house and the lights were still out. I called for John and my mom and looked around the house. I felt exposed not having a weapon with me in this house with a killer around. I saw my dad’s tool belt on the couch and grabbed the hammer. There was a bump coming from the second floor, and I walked over to the stairs and called for John and mom again. I heard my mother respond calling me from the floor. I rushed upstairs and look down the hall and heard my mom struggling in Tara’s room and I rushed down the hall and tripped over something and fell on the floor. I looked over and it was John, and he looked like he was knocked in the head with a blunt object. The gun was still in his hand and took it. I had never used a gun before, and I was always against gun violence. I walked closer to my sister’s room and heard more struggling coming from the room. I kicked open the gun and aim it at Reed’s back. “Ah, Mr. Reed glad you can join us.” He said facing me. “Let my mother go Mr. Reed.” I said. “What are you going to do,” he said facing me. “Kill me?” He started walking towards me and my hand and the gun began to shake. I was scared I never killed anyone in my life and I was scared that he might kill me before he kills my mother. “Look at you Erickson; you’re shaking like a cold Chihuahua. You never held a gun, shot a gun or even shot someone. You’ve been pathetic all your life…you’ll always will be.” He said trying to take the gun out of my hand. He and I were fighting over the gun and I saw my mom with an alarm clock in her hand. I focused back on Reed and tried to take the gun back. My finger was caught in the trigger and he pushed me on to the wall outside of the room and then BANG! The gun goes off and I felt a loud, hot feeling in my shoulder. I looked down and saw a bullet went through my shoulder. I started sliding down the wall and while a tear falls down my eye. I couldn’t believe that I was going to die just like that. He turned away from me and I hear my mother smacking Reed in the head with the alarm clock. She walked over to me and asked if I was okay. My vision was a little blurred and my arm felt like it was going to be sliced off. Reed was getting up and was going after my mom and grabbed her by the hair. He smacked her in the face and grabbed his knife and looked at me face-to-face. “I want you to watch and say your last good byes to your mother.” He said. I started crawling toward my mother before he got to her. But every step he took he was getting closer to her. I was nervous that I was going to lose my mother over a crook that wanted revenge on him. He raised his arm in the air preparing to strike….but there was another gunshot. He slowly lets his arm fall and he looks at me with a surprised look on his face. I looked behind me and John was standing with the gun in his hand still aimed at Reed. He pulls the trigger and shoots him in his knees. Reed falls to his knees while John helped me to my feet. He placed the gun in my hand and looked at me and said. “You wanted to end this, bro. Make this right.” He said. I stepped back curling one arm and held the gun in the other. I aimed it at Reed’s head and said. “Stay away from my family.” And pulled the trigger. “The bullet goes right in between his eyes and he collapsed on the floor next to my mother. She quickly got up and ran over to me. I gave the gun back to John and we walked downstairs to the front porch. We waited on the cops to arrive. I was glad it was all over. No Reed and no more stress.